KnownOrigin Pixel art NFT week
PIXEL ART NFT WEEK – June 14th - 18th . A celebration of pixel art in the NFT space.
Look close enough at any piece of digital art display and you'll find pixels, like the atoms of our new digital life. There was time when you couldn't miss them. Blocky Atari games, Commodore 64 games in just a few colours, fun NES platformers all with their pixels on display. But now a new generation of artists embrace the form, exploring the medium, testing the limits and pushing right past its boundaries to create wonderful and expressive pieces of digital art. These are modern pixel artists.
But why choose such a difficult medium to master? KnownOrigin artist Dmitry Petyakin, ElMetallico, traces his interest all the way back to those games.
“I spent my childhood playing Sega and NES games, and it, definitely, is the main reason - I fell in love with these tiny little squares.”
Inspired by other pixel artists such as waneela, 6VCR, Arcade Hero and KnownOrigin's own Genuine Human Art, Dmitry embraces some of the limits of the form.
“I use only limited palettes. I have 6 main palettes to use, and rarely try others. I never pick my own colours.”
But in other aspects, his work is beautifully free. Unique and striking, Dmitry's work is instantly recognisable.
Gordon Zuchhold is another artist who reminisces on those classic games.
“I grew up with games like Prince of Persia, Flashback, and all of those old-school point & click adventure games. So it's part nostalgia.”
Gordon enjoys pushing the medium within its limits, creating beautiful sci-fi scenes that feel like they come from our rose-tinted memories of the past. They're not what we saw back then. Instead, they are what we imagined them to be. Gordon is now exploring a fusion of pixels and voxel art, believing there is still so much to explore.
“Pixel art has always fascinated me,” says Stefanie Grunwald (Moertel). “Back in my late-80s- childhood my father would lend me his old work computers and I used them to make my very first 1- bit pixel art.”
While also thinking back fondly to classic games, Stefanie's main inspiration is real life and her vast collection of night photographs. This can be seen in her dark neo-noir animated pieces which retain the pixel crispness while bringing a haunting sense of reality.
“I don't let colour counts or canvas sizes limit me but I do pay attention to preserving the pixellated look, so I avoid using gradients.”
Genuine Human Art also traces his inspirations to the beauty of classic games.
“I remember standing in arcades just picking out the details in the fighting game backgrounds.”
Creating cyberpunk art about human connection, Genuine Human embraces the limits while being thankful not to have to stick to them.
“I love the crispness of the pixel, something that due to CRT screens even old games didn't have, so I embrace that. But I break free in other ways, such as in my use of colour.”
His main source of inspiration is the imagined future of his childhood self.
“Most of my art is set in the world I thought we'd be living in.”
Other celebrated KnownOrigin artists include Kristy Glas, JamFactory and Numo.
“I was learning digital art on my own and I originally thought pixelart would be easier to learn,”
says Glas who now counts pixel art as just one of her mediums,
“Turns outs great pixelart can be quite challenging and time consuming, but also very satisfying.”
Numo feels he is still early in his art journey but has already made a strong name for himself in the community
“I think I still have to find myself and I'm loving it!”
It feels almost impossible to ask a pixel artist about their art form without hearing about classic videogames but each of these artists is pushing the medium in all new ways, in their own directions and creating incredible works of art. Pixel Art NFT Week celebrates those artists. Run and curated by Genuine Human Art, the week takes place from the 14 th to 18 th of June with the SQUARED metaverse exhibition at ARC Novo running until the 22 nd. All of these exceptional artists and more are featured and celebrated in the event.
Featured KnownOrigin Artists: